As per Statista, almost 80 million motor vehicles were produced worldwide in 2021. The passenger cars segment itself generated 71 percent of this production. Which roughly amounted to 57 million units.
The automotive market is growing each year. Hence more and more people end up buying and owning a car.
If you own a car, chances are that you love it as well. And you also want to keep it in as good condition as possible. Therefore, if you want to maintain your vehicle’s appearance without going too harsh on your pocket, you should consider detailing your car at home.
The following steps will help you achieve the best car detailing results at home.
What is Car Detailing
Car detailing can make your car look brand new. It is a process of cleaning, polishing, and waxing the surface of your vehicle to its original condition. This keeps your car looking shiny and new.
Car washing is important to maintain your car’s appearance. But it doesn’t offer the same benefits as detailing. Car washes tend to leave behind small residues that dull down the paint finish over time. Whereas, with detailing, you will have a fresh coat of wax that ensures 100% protection. Car Wax protects your paint from UV rays and other damage-causing environmental factors.
Detailing also helps keep your interior clean. This step is crucial if you have kids or pets because pet hair tends to stick around much longer than you think. It looks cleaner, and the smell remains pleasant as you add some air fresheners.
The First Step: Get Your Supplies Ready
Get a bucket, sponge, microfiber cloth, and car wax. These are the essential supplies to start detailing your car. The sponge should be soft so it does not scratch the paint on your vehicle. Even high-quality sponges, like those made from synthetic materials, are still prone to scratching your vehicles. Avoid such products as much as possible because they could potentially ruin everything.
Step 1: Preclean the Car
Start by pre-cleaning your car. This step ensures that you don’t leave any corner uncleaned. Straight-off jumping into a car wash is not a good idea. It could leave out some obscure corner that requires a hard scrub or brush. Use a small brush to reach the tight spots, like between the wheel wells or around the door handles.
Step 2: Wash it
Now you can wash your car. If you have a hose with a nozzle, go ahead and use that to wash the exterior of your vehicle. If not, grab a bucket with water. Use a soft sponge or cloth to remove dirt from the car’s bodywork. Avoid using chemical-based soap as it could sometimes dull down its shine and even damage it.
Once you’ve washed off all the dirt and grime from your car’s bodywork, take out some waxing brush. This will help you reach hard-to-reach areas like wheels, door jambs, and bumpers without leaving behind streaks or marks.
Step 3: Clean the Windows and Mirrors
– Use a microfiber cloth to clean the windows and mirrors.
– Clean the windshield with glass cleaner. You can also use soap or dish liquid on a toothbrush to scrub away tough road grime.
– Wipe the window with water, then dry it with a clean towel.
Step 4: Give It a Good Scrub
Research suggests that the car detailing market will grow at a CAGR of 9.6% from 2022 to 2031. This is expected to reach US$ 3.35 Bn by the end of 2031. As such, the market looks vibrant and hopeful, but you are beating the market by doing it on your own.
So this is the stage where you need to get down and dirty. Using a sponge or microfiber cloth, apply gentle soap to the vehicle and wash it with warm water in the shade. Use enough soap to wet the car but not so much that you use more than necessary.
Give it plenty of elbow room and time for rinsing. You want to avoid causing unnecessary swirls or scratches on your car’s finish. Once you’re done rinsing out all the suds, dry it off with another microfiber cloth.
Step 5: Polish the Exterior
Take the time to give your car a good polish. Many products on the market can make your vehicle shine, but ensure you’re using a good quality polish. You’ll want to use a circular motion and avoid too much pressure. The goal is to buff out any scratches or swirl marks left behind by previous polishes and waxes. Remember the door handles and mirrors.
Step 6: Apply Car Wax to Protect the Paint
After applying your glaze, you should apply wax to protect it from the sun and rain.
– Apply the wax on a small section using a soft cloth. Let it dry completely before moving on to the next section.
– Use small circular motions when applying car wax. Refrain from rubbing too hard and damaging your car’s paint job.
Step 7: Dry It Off
Now is the moment of truth. You’ve washed and rinsed your car, applied the polish and wax, and now it’s time to dry it off. Use a chamois or microfiber cloth to get all the water out of crevices and corners. Don’t use a towel as they leave scratches.
Paper towels are also too rough on paint jobs, so stay away from them. If you have neither available, use an old t-shirt or dish rag instead. If anything gets on your car’s interior, wipe it up with paper towels before drying off your exterior.
If excess wax shows up after drying off with a cloth or rag, then go ahead and rub that off with another clean, dry cloth. Rub it until there is no visible film left behind anywhere on your vehicle.
The great thing about car detailing is that you can do it on your own. It doesn’t take much time, and the reward is huge. You have a clean car that looks brand new! What more could you ask for? Spare some hours, get down to cleaning and scrubbing, and your car will be all good to go.